18 Feb 2013

RBA share in bank note company sold

7:23 am on 18 February 2013

The Reserve Bank of Australia has moved to distance itself from a bribery scandal by selling its interest in the bank note company at the centre of the scandal.

Radio New Zealand's Sydney correspondent reports there were red faces at the RBA when accusations of bribery were made against a joint venture note printing business with the firm Securency.

The allegations were that eight former managers and employees of the venture between Securency and Note Printing Australia, an RBA subsidiary, bribed officials in south-east Asia over a five year period to win contracts to print bank notes.

Now, the Reserve Bank has announced that it has agreed to sell its 50% stake in Securency for $A65 million to Innovia, a UK company which owns the other half.

A report by the RBA into the scandal found with hindsight there should be have greater oversight of the note printing operations.